Chapter 49: Super Strong Style 16 Day Three is up on Demand Progress, so let's polish this bad boy off!
Roy Johnson is out first for the Wasteman Challenge! He does his deal and the crowd wants Jeremy Corbyn to answer, and Roy lets them down gently before calling his actual challenger out. It's David Starr! And Pastor William Eaver! And Flamita! And "Flash" Morgan Webster! And Mark Andrews!
Johnson asks if anybody else is coming out before observing that since it's five on one it's only fair that one of them go first. Starr raises his hand and steps up. He's from Philadelphia, so there's only one song he can do, and he proceeds to rap the opening theme to Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, albeit with a mid-song flameout and restart.
Roy takes care of him easily by pointing out that he failed to remember the lyrics, and the Jewish Cannon sulks in the corner. Pastor has some bars next, but when it becomes clear his aim is to convert Roy, Starr takes the hat and gives it to Flash. Flash insults Johnson's lack of speed and the Body Guy actually backs off, hurt. But Mark Andrews isn't done with him yet. Just watch, folks—
.@MandrewsJunior with some jet engine level heat on @RoyJohnsonYeah during the #sss16 wasteman challenge pic.twitter.com/TVODfXQf1A— PROGRESS Wrestling (@ThisIs_Progress) May 29, 2017
Johnson denies the truth of the statement and asks what Flamita's laughing about. He doesn't even speak English! Flamita proceeds to sing the Macarena in the year of our lord 2017. Jimmy Havoc comes down, chair in hand, and takes a seat in the ring. He apologizes to Jim, Jon, and Glen for interrupting their little rap battle, but five years he's killed himself for this company, and this is the hangover match?
He apologizes, says this isn't happening, he's better than this, and he lays waste to the other six men with the chair and heads to the back! Jack Sexsmith runs down! His arm is still in a sling, he demands referee Chris Roberts ring the bell, and we have a match!
David Starr vs. Flamita vs. Jack Sexsmith vs. Mark Andrews vs. "Flash" Morgan Webster vs. Roy Johnson vs. Pastor William Eaver (Wasteman Challenge Hangover Scramble Match)
Jack making quick covers, but he comes up empty on everyone and ends up face-to-face with Roy before bailing and heading back to the stage and taking a seat by the announce table. Starr in, Johnson knocks him out with a shoulder block, Pastor in, Irish Church backbreaker / Fisher of Men suplex combo takes the Body Guy out and Webster comes in, springboard moonsault to the Brit Pop Drop!
Andrews in, both men moving like lightning, Flamita in with Andrews, flip city! Headscissors takeover, David in, taking the luchador down, tilt-a-whirl slam and he faces off with Eaver. Handshake accepted, the King of Taunts throws a punch but the holy man's powers block him and both Starr and Johnson are bowled over with the spirit!
Flash in with a holy headbutt, Andrews takes him out with an enzuigiri... TOPE CON GIRO! Flamita climbing... CORKSCREW MOONSAULT TO THE OUTSIDE! Underhooks, Morgan scouts him, Dragon sleeper, Andrews grabs a Dragon sleeper on Flash, Pastor and Roy join in the human submissionpede and Starr pushes him over to DDT the lot!
David declares it time for high flying and he forces all five other men to look at it! Jack Sexsmith leaves commentary to join in the fun! Davey Wrestling dutifully makes him look at it, but Jack is, uh, rather more engaged with... it. Sexsmith leaves, Morgan comes in, looking for Eton Rifles, blocked, Eaver and Starr... JERUSALEM DESTROYER!
Johnson cleaning house, Wavy Tonic... NO GOOD! Flamita catches him with a boot, trips him up, Tiger feint kick, missile dropkick! Webster in, Poison Frankensteiner, he climbs the turnbuckles... OVER THE RINGPOST SENTON ATOMICO! Back in, stalking Flamita, he slips out of Eton Rifle, hits the butterfly suplex backbreaker!
Andrews in, Muscle Buster lungblower gets around him, Starr in, blocks Flam Fly, trading blows, Flamita ducks a lariat...
Flamita wins by pinfall with Flam Fly on David Starr.
Man, I love a good scramble, and this was a good scramble. Good story beats, with Havoc once again sick of killing himself to no return and Sexsmith equally concerned with proving himself as a competitor, torn bicep or not, and, uh, more carnal pursuits.
Travis Banks vs. Zack Sabre, Jr. (Super Strong Style 16 Semifinal Match)
Banks right in with a forearm and Sabre's ire is up from the jump! Trading blows, Travis takes him down and they square back off after a scuffle. Trading strike on strike, ZSJ knocks the Kiwi Buzzsaw down and stomps the back of his head in. Banks back up, looking for a guillotine, Sabre escapes, standing headscissors neck twist and he goes to work on Travis' neck.
Crooked headscissors, roll-through, picking at the leg, but Banks makes the ropes. Zack putting the boots to him against the ropes but Travis wakes up, throwing strikes, caught by the octopus hold! Banks makes the ropes but the Technical Wizard stays on him with charging uppercuts. Kiwi Buzzsaw gets some breathing room with a huge jumping lariat, follows it up with charging strikes and the cannonball, only good for one.
Reverse chinlock sleeper, Sabre shifts away from it, guillotine choke, Banks counters with a suplex. Slice of Heaven ducked, Zack in with a flying triangle choke but Travis is too close to the ropes to keep it on! Both men visibly becoming spent, trading strikes, trying to find a crack in the armor. ZSJ with his arm clasped behind his back, he wants more!
Banks catches a boot, trip, Busaiku Knee Kick, Sabre returns the favor with a Penalty Kick. Kiwi Buzzsaw looking for that lariat again... SABRE CATCHES HIM INTO A CROSS ARMBAR! Banks posts to his feet and counters with a deadlift powerbomb! Laying chest kicks in, ZSJ catches one, trip, Penalty Kick, Liger Bomb... NOT ENOUGH!
Back on their feet, forehead to forehead, Sabre asks for more and gets a slap that puts him out to the apron. Returning in kind, hitting hard, Travis with a German suplex, Slice of Heaven connects! He wants to go for it again to put Zack away... CAUGHT IN THE TRIANGLE CHOKE! OVERHEAD ELBOWS FLYING! BANKS ESCAPES AND STOMPS SABRE'S HEAD IN! SPRINGBOARD...
Travis Banks wins by pinfall with Slice of Heaven.
Excellent match. Love the through-line to the whole tournament where dudes keep on having to bring new stuff out to put Travis Banks away, but it's his time and he won't be denied. Also kind of dug the moment of doubt with Slice of Heaven at the end there, he nearly got caught because he didn't want to take the chance of it not working now that it finally connected.
Matt Riddle vs. Tyler Bate (Super Strong Style 16 Semifinal Match)
Bate will be competing with his boots off tonight, it seems.
Riddle going literally right for the throat, with a goozle and a clean break in the corner. Intense grappling, Bro picking the leg and taking him to the mat, looking for an armbar before wrenching his foot unholy with an ankle lock! Bate manages to get his back but he can't quite capitalize and Matt slams him down after standing up.
Probing kicks from standing, test of strength, Tyler takes him down, deathlock wristlock to a crossleg bow-and-arrow to a side headlock, Bro reverses to a Fujiwara armbar, looking for the cross armbar again but Bate gets the ropes. Struggle in the corner, Tyler paintbrushing Matt with the bones of his forearm and Riddle comes back at him hard.
Pele kick blocked but an elbow finds its home and Bate rolls outside! Baseball slide fake-out slap to the face, back inside, charging forearm, exploder suplex, high jump senton, only a nearfall. Rolling Karelin lifts, finishing with a loose Doctor Bomb and a nearfall! Bro 2 Sleep blocked with elbows, Tyler catches him with a forearm, Cyclone Kill?! NO GOOD!
Kneeling armbar, looking for the Jim Breaks elbow stomp and he gets it. Stepover toehold, maybe thinking STF but he decides against it in favor of a simple wrench. Throwing kicks but a wave of calm comes over Riddle and he fires up, rising to his feet like a god of war, demanding more... AND TYLER GOES LOW WITH A STOMP TO THE FOOT!
Standing senton atomico, only two, Bro back with a chest kick, slap, Bate with a boot up on the charge, diving elbow... CATCH BROMISSION! Tyler won't let him get all of it! Turning, rising to his feet, Matt throwing elbows to the trapezius but Bate blocks, Tombstone clutch, reversed, reversed again, Tyler changes his grip... GOTCH TOMBSTONE PILEDRIVER! NOT ENOUGH!
Trading punches, from their knees to their feet, Riddle in with a slap rush, Bate hits a German suplex, but Bro rises! Another German, same effect! A third, Matt on his feet but Tyler catches him with a firm right hand! Bro 2 Sleep, German suplex... NO GOOD!
Slap for slap, Bro fires up, another slap rush, boot into the ropes, lariat dodged, Pele kick connects, fisherman buster, only a nearfall! Riddle holds onto the clutch, shifts Bate, Tombstone piledriver... NOPE! Slap begets Bop and Bang begets a kick begets a rolling Koppo kick, Tyler Driver, nope, Riddle shifts out, the knee connects... TYLER BATE LIVES!
Matt with a Penalty Kick, Bate ducks a followup roundhouse kick, diving uppercut, Tyler Driver '97 connects, he rolls Bro back, underhooks...
Tyler Bate wins by pinfall with Tyler Driver '97.
Two for two on great semifinals here. Especially enjoyed the early goings here, felt very different, more like the Riddle of his early Evolve days before he settled on his (admittedly very good) formula.
Katey Harvey vs. Kay Lee Ray (Progress Women's Championship #1 Contender's Match)
A bit of handshake drama early, both women intending it as a ruse and going for boots at the same time. Ray looking for the Gory Bomb early, Harvey slips away, looking to finish things out of underhooks, not happening either. Kay with an overhand chop, Katey tosses her outside, back in, another chop and it's Harvey that is thrown out this time.
Back inside, O'Connor roll nearly wins it for Ray, trading charging strikes, a clothesline sends her outside and Katey is only too happy to take the countout. Kay Lee trips her up near the apron, dropkick to the side of the head, to the second but Harvey sidesteps the missile dropkick. Looking for a reverse Boston Crab, denied, so she puts the boots to Ray before following up with a fallaway slam, only good for two.
Taking Kay to the mat, stomp of the arm, chop for knee, mat slam takes her back down, wicked stomp to the wrist before just grinding her heel into Ray's hands. Kay Lee catches her in the corner with a forearm to the back of the head, swinging basement reverse STO to the Koji Clutch, Katey turns it into a pin to force Ray to kick out and let her escape!
Springboard countered right into a forearm, Harvey follows with an exploder suplex. Shoulder thrust, snap suplex, the Irish woman in firm control but KLR isn't done fighting. Small package, only two, sliding forearm from Katey puts her in the corner, charging uppercut, pulling the sleeve up but Ray clips her with a superkick on the charge!
Only a nearfall, missile dropkick on the button this time, up top, senton atomico... NO GOOD! The Koji Clutch is back on, Harvey fighting for the ropes... and she gets them! KLR trying for the Gory Bomb again, Katey slips out, big lariat... NOT ENOUGH! Whip reversed, superkick gets a boot and Harvey locks La Campana on for a second before turning it into a curb stomp... STILL NOT ENOUGH!
Underhooks, reversed, catch of the boot, Gory Special...
Kay Lee Ray wins by pinfall with a Gory Bomb, becoming #1 contender to the Progress Women's Championship.
Good match, built from the gate around the idea that nothing was ending this besides an impact finisher. Stoked for Ray/Storm II (RayCrisis?) as our first Progress Women's Championship defense, too.
Toni comes down from commentary with her title to square off with her challenger and KLR slaps her in the face and bails.
Mark Haskins vs. Trent Seven (Submission Match)
Seven in with a kick, Haskins returns the favor, triangle choke, Trent holds out for more than six seconds! Powerbomb counter, Mark shifts to a cross armbar, Seven reverses to a cloverleaf and Haskins gets the ropes. Throwing forearms, Mark returns the favor with leg kicks, knucklelock transition to chest kicks, Seven trying a vertical suplex, Haskins rolls through, another chest kick!
To the corner, climbing after, mounted punches, Trent throws him off but Mark has a drop toehold, in the ropes, Tiger feint kick! Armbar takedown to the bridging Fujiwara armbar, Seven desperately gets a break and crawls outside. Haskins follows, throwing hard chops, Trent throwing his own back, he's smart to the duck once but on the second try puts his hand right into the ringpost!
Right hands, giving Seven a seat, but the charge is countered with a boot, chops, forearms, charging in himself now but it's a fakeout to a sleeper hold! Mark counters, shoulder armbreaker, throwing hands, up the entryway, Haskins throwing chest kicks, Jimmy Havoc gives him a chair but Trent catches him low and waffles Havoc with the chair before cracking it across Mark's back!
Back in the ring, Seven stands, framed perfectly as you see Havoc getting up and coming down with a chair. Haskins gets a superkick off, Jimmy comes in the ring, goes to waffle Trent with it but he ducks and Haskin catches it full force! Seven hits Seven Stars on Havoc, he picks the legs...
Trent Seven wins by submission with a sharpshooter on Mark Haskins.
Good match, I like Haskins most when he goes heavy on the grappling so this was a hoot for me. And that ending sequence! So much intrigue!
Havoc clobbers Trent from behind with a forearm before cracking him in the stomach with a chair! Jimmy checks on Haskins and helps him to his feet and to the back.
Jeff Cobb vs. Pete Dunne (c) (Progress World Championship)
Dunne with a low blow before the introductions are finished! The bell rings, he charges in, and Cobb takes him over with a belly to belly suplex! The tossing gutwrench suplex follows, Pete with a bite of the fingers, Jeff back at it with clubbing forearms, Dunne catches him with an enzuigiri and a Saito suplex, only good for a nearfall.
Gouging the eyes, hooking the nose, setting the elbow up for the stop, Peter on a roll. Romero special leg hooks, pulling the hair, gouging the eyes, stomp to the back of the knee, kick to the arm, a full-on dickhead is the champion. Disdainful kicks, Cobb catches one and hits an exploder suplex! Dunne climbing, Jeff cuts him off... DELAYED VERTICAL ONE-HANDED SUPERPLEX! NO GOOD!
Standing moonsault, standing shooting star press misses and Pete catches him in a triangle choke. Deadlift powerbomb escape, the shooting star press connects this time, only a nearfall! X Plex... NOT ENOUGH! Trading strikes, forearm for forearm, the Olympian backs the champ up but he does the ol' Daniel Bryan up-and-over backflip and throws a German suplex only for Cobb to rise to his feet.
German suplex in return, Dunne lands on his feet, enzuigiri, trading lariats, Jeff with a diving uppercut and both men are out on the mat! Pete throws referee Chris Roberts in the way, Pedigree blocked, Cobb turns it around... STANDING MOONSAULT FALLAWAY SLAM! Peter has the ropes!
Looking for the pop-up German, Dunne catches him with a DDT, Pedigree connects... NO GOOD! Off the ropes, the pop-up German suplex connects, Tour of the Islands reversed into a small package, only two, champion with a German suplex into the turnbuckles, pumphandle...
Pete Dunne wins by pinfall with Bitter End, retaining the Progress World Championship.
Really good match. Pete doing real underhanded stuff throughout but in the end it's his actual acumen and skill that wins the day after a few clever reversals.
Travis Banks vs. Tyler Bate (Super Strong Style 16 Finals)
Banks right with a takedown into the Lion Clutch but Bate escapes before he can get it on all the way! Takedown, bit of mat grappling, stalemate. Back to the grappling, Tyler with the World of Sport handstand escape on a headlock, jockeying for position, staredown, Bate with snapmare to a kick to the back and Travis returns the favor.
Trading a few more of 'em, Banks runs the ropes and runs right into Bop and Bang! Back in with a snapmare, big slap across the back of the head, charging strikes, Bate flagging but he's able to catch him with a back elbow before the cannonball. Low kick hangs Tyler in the ropes, lungblower, the cannonball connects, only two!
Boot up on the charge, Bate with a wicked knee into the uppercut and Travis is outside but he cuts a dive off with a gamengiri. Cut off in return with an uppercut, Tyler looking for a diving headbutt but Banks has the wherewithal to grab the Lion Clutch! Bate escapes, airplane spin with incredible velocity and he puts the Kiwi Buzzsaw's head into the turnbuckle and drops him.
Cyclone Kill follows... NO GOOD! Banks floats out of a suplex, basement superkick, Bate has a full-sized one in return and they trade kicks, bicycle, rolling Koppo, and single leg drop before Tyler clobbers him with the slingshot lariat! Both men in a corner, recovering, Bate charges in with uppercuts, Travis goes for the big jumping lariat, Tyler ducks it and referee Joel Allen eats it!
Kiwi Krusher but there's nobody there to count! Referee Paz runs down, slides in, he's making the count... NO GOOD! Slice of Heaven... AGAIN THE REF TAKES IT! A second hits Bate, Joel is up and ready to count... PETE DUNNE STOPS THE COUNT! HE PEDIGREES JOEL ALLEN! Dunne and Seven put boots to Banks but #CCK IS HERE!
Chris Brookes and Kid Lykos make the save! Moonsault tornado DDT on Dunne! STEREO DIVES! Banks climbs... SENTON ATOMICO TO THE OUTSIDE! Back in the ring and Bate hits a low blow! Bitter End! Joke's on him, no ref! Referee Chris Roberts comes down, 1.. 2.. NOT ENOUGH! #CCK fight Dunne and Seven to the back and our finalists are once again alone on the mat.
Looking for flash pins, it's not happening, O'Connor roll almost does it, Slice of Heaven with the energy from the kickout but Bate uses the momentum to hit the rolling Koppo kick! Banks outside, Tyler dives on him! Bate rolls Travis back in but he comes righ back out with a suicide dive! Another one, Tyler catches him... GOTCH TOMBSTONE PILEDRIVER ON THE FLOOR!
Bate throwing chairs, the Kiwi Buzzsaw swats 'em down and walks through, throwing one back and kicking Bate through it! Back in the ring, charge, back body drop to the outside, Travis crotches him on the ringpost, diving double stomp to the back! Climbing... COAST TO COAST!
On their knees, trading slaps and forearms as they rise, opening up to punches, just slugging it out! Gotch Tombstone Piledriver, Tyler climbs... SPIRAL TAP?! TRAVIS BANKS LIVES! Wristlock, throwing punches but the Kiwi Buzzsaw rises, steel resolve. Pump kick, wristlock stomps to the head, fired up, Slice of Heaven countered with a superkick!
Tyler Driver '97... NOT ENOUGH! Dragging Banks to his feet, setting him up top, underhooks, Banks reverses... AVALANCHE KIWI KRUSHER! SOMEHOW BATE KICKS OUT! RIGHT INTO THE LION CLUTCH...
Travis Banks wins by submission with the Lion Clutch, winning the 2017 Super Strong Style 16.
What a match. Incredible. Progress have always had a knack for these big matches, where they might, in any other promotion, come off a bit overwrought, have a few too many moving parts, but in Progress, they have a deft touch with it and it almost always comes off excellently, and this was no different. Pete Dunne better watch his back.
Jim Smallman gets in the ring to properly announce Travis Banks as the winner of SSS16. Banks has some comments, he's worked really hard and taken a lot of chances, but there's one more chance he's taking and that's the main event at Alexandra Palace. Smallman gives it to him, and he'll cash in his title shot in September!
Hell of a way to end a tournament weekend. Match-wise, all three tournament matches were top shelf, but really start to finish it was a strong show in the ring. As well, we're promised some strong stuff in the future now as well, with both Ray/Storm II for the women's title and Banks/Dunne for the men's
And storywise, things are really popping off! Both Jimmy Havoc and Mark Haskins have started to be openly disgruntled over the weekend, and that came to a head during the submission match, with a lot of interesting places it could go in terms of who turns and how and all that. Should be a very strong backbone of the shows through the summer!
British Strong Style vs. #CCK kicks off in earnest, and while BSS show a united front for now, it's not hard to see where cracks might form, with both Seven and Dunne winning their matches on this one (more or less) by themselves, and Bate failing despite the assistance of his allies.
Check it out on Demand Progress, folks-- it's the best $7.50 you can spend in indie wrestling, whether you just dive right in with this weekend or go back to the beginning for the full Progress experience.